Gluten- free Quinoa Tabouli

While Middle-eastern restaurants are a great choice for eating gluten-free (and vegetarian), one thing you can’t order is tabouli (also spelled tabbouleh), as it’s made from bulghur wheat. I had a bunch of parsley to use up, so I decided to try making gluten-free tabouli with quinoa instead. It was absolutely delicious!

Since quinoa is actually a seed, it is high in protein, making this a complete meal if you like. If you buy boxed, commercially produced quinoa you only need to rinse it lightly. It has already been pre-rinsed to remove the bitter coating.

The renovation: The original recipe comes from my old favorite, Molly Katzen’s Moosewood Cookbook. I swapped in quinoa for the bulger wheat, replaced dried mint with fresh mint, and reduced the olive oil by half.

Suitable for:
vegan, gluten-free, low-sodium, reduced-sugar diets

Not for:
migraine diets

Gluten- free Quinoa Tabouli

Tabouli-style salad with quinoa

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Prep Time 30 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Lunch
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water (filtered or spring) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1-1/2 tsp sea salt (omit for low-sodium diet)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (fresh)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil (extra virgin)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup onions (green) chopped, scallions, spring onions
  • 3-4 sprigs mint leaves (fresh)
  • 2 tomatoes medium, or 1 large heirloom
  • 1 bunch Italian flat-leaf parsley (fresh)


  • Put the rinsed quinoa in a saucepan with the water or stock and salt and bring to a boil. Cover and then turn down the heat. Cook on a low simmer for 10-12 minutes. Turn off the heat and let steam for at least 5 minutes more. Fluff with a fork.
  • Finely chop one bunch of parsley. You can use the stems, just make sure you cut up everything very finely and uniformly.
  • Finely chop the mint leaves. Place in a large bowl.
  • Chop the tomatoes into medium-sized pieces.
  • Finely slice the scallions (whites and greens) and add to the bowl with the tomatoes.
  • Add the quinoa and toss evenly.
  • Finely mince or press the garlic and place in a bowl or measuring cup deep enough to whisk in. Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper, and olive oil. Whisk until it emulsifies (thickens up).
  • Pour over the salad and toss until evenly coated. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  • Serve at once or hold in the refrigerator for several hours for the flavors to meld.


Per serving:
  • 164 calories
  • 6 g fat
  • 1 g saturated fat
  • 4 g monounsaturated fat
  • 1 g polyunsaturated fat
  • 0 g trans fat
  • 0 g cholesterol
  • 389 mg sodium (14 mg sodium with salt omitted)
  • 400 mg potassium
  • 23 g carbohydrate
  • 3 g fiber
  • 2 g sugars
  • 5 g protein
  • 4 Weight Watchers Points Plus